Opening 07.08.19 6-8pm
Artist Talks 29.08.19 6-7pm
Brown Pillars reconsiders the gallery space to critique the effects of institutional racism in art systems.
Food wrappers are a continuous motif in the artworks as a reference to the way in which I found my identity in Asian grocery stores when I could not find it reflected in the art world.
A scaffolding system made from bamboo poles is used as a visual metaphor to bring form to the contradictory condition, inside the gallery system, where ‘brown bodies’ are hyper-visible and simultaneously invisible. The grid scaffolding references modernism, while the bamboo represents the labour and ingenuity of the people on whose backs European Modernism staked its claim to singularity. In defiance of this singularity, I argue that the West does not own either Modernism or modernity.
The labor of African, Asian, Latinx and Indigenous people has been historically invisible from what the West deems ‘serious art’, and still they are tokenised in this performance of ‘inclusivity’.
Aida Azin is an artist based in Naarm of the Kulin Nations (Melbourne, Australia). Her practice engages with her Filipino-Iranian heritage and promotes the importance of pride in self-representation for People of Colour. Azin graduated from honours in fine art at the University of South Australia in 2017. Most recently, Azin exhibited in the group show A sinking feeling (the politics of risk) at Blak Dot Gallery (Naarm/Melbourne). In 2016 Azin received the Carclew Project and Development grant for research to travel to the Philippines where she held a solo show Everything is stolen at Project 20 in Manilla which was re-shown at Fontanelle (Kaurna/Adelaide). This was followed with another solo show in 2017 titled Enormous blind spots at Format (Kaurna/Adelaide).
Aida Azin, Black Foot, 2017, spray paint, oil stick, acrylic and digital print on canvas, dimensions variable, photo credit: Tyrone Ormsby
Aida Azin, Brown Pillars, 2017, acrylic and digital print on canvas, dimensions variable, photo credit: Tyrone Ormsby
Aida Azin, Pink Head, 2017, mixed media, acrylic and digital print on canvas, dimensions variable, photo credit: Tyrone Ormsby